The BBC is reporting that a UK online university network is claiming a “breakthrough moment” with a project which will allow students to cut the cost of a Russell Group degree by studying part of it online.
A Futurelearn online course will provide credits towards a University of Leeds undergraduate degree. It will mean reducing the time and cost of tuition fees for a full degree.
Mr Horrocks, who is the Open University’s vice chancellor, says this is an important move towards a more flexible degree system, making university courses more “cost effective and time effective”.
The partnership with Leeds is expected to be followed by a number of other universities.
Simon Nelson, Futurelearn’s chief executive, says the technology and quality of online learning has been rapidly improving and that the impact of digital technology on education was accelerating.
“Universities are looking at a world that is going more digital, more quickly than they are comfortable with – and they are having to think about their digital strategy,” said Mr Nelson.
Neil Morris, director of digital learning at the University of Leeds, said this was a step towards a more “pick and mix” style of higher education, in which students could have a much more customised approach to learning.
Prof Morris said that it could lead to students putting together their own degree courses, studying different units from different universities and mixing online learning with residential courses.
Do you think this is a step in the right direction for more flexible learning? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below or on twitter.
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